COSSAC builds on and extends work carried out by the Advanced Computation Laboratory (ACL) (1987-2006), part of Cancer Research UK, Europe's largest independent cancer research organisation.

Research at the ACL focused on advanced computing and artificial intelligence techniques and technologies to help in solving biomedical problems.

The laboratory carried out basic research in formal computer science, focusing on artificial intelligence (AI), mathematical logic and logic programming as a basis for developing innovative information technologies to support patient care.

Specific interests included decision-making (e.g. for diagnosis and therapy decisions); knowledge engineering (e.g. for computerizing care plans and protocols) and reasoning under uncertainty (e.g. for risk assessment). We also develop advanced technologies for these and other applications and have a particular interest in formal software design methods and intelligent agents (e.g. for managing safety-critical therapies).